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UCLA Olympic Sports Roundup: #8 Women’s Basketball Sweeps Washington Schools

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Plus, women’s water polo continues to roll.

Michaela Onyenwere scored a career-high 31 points against Washington on Friday night.
UCLA Athletics/uclabruins.com

The UCLA Bruins had an excellent showing on the Olympic Sports front the week of January 21, dropping only one volleyball match to Penn State and winning in all other sports. Here is the recap for the week.

#8 Women’s Basketball

The UCLA women’s basketball team gave fans a scare on Friday night, going the into overtime against the Washington Huskies before ultimately winning the game, 85-80. The Bruins were down by 15 points in the second quarter, but outscored Washington 26-12 in the third quarter to take the lead. Junior Michaela Onyenwere scored a career-high 31 points in the win.

On Sunday, the Bruins completed their sweep of the Washington schools when they took down Washington State, 66-50. Onyenwere had her ninth game of the season scoring over 20 points and the Bruins tied a season-high with 14 steals. The first quarter was much closer than the final score, with the teams trading points and closing the quarter at 14 apiece. At halftime, UCLA had taken a decided 32-20 lead and by the game’s end held as much as a 19-point lead.

Track and Field

The UCLA track and field team was in New York last weekend participating in the Dr. Sander Invitational and the Bruins had a great showing with several top-notch performances. Shae Anderson broke a 17-year record in the women’s 400m with a school-record indoor time of 53.46. Freshman sprinter Catherine Leger placed second in the 200m with a time of 24.02 seconds, moving her to fourth place all-time in UCLA indoor history in the event.

Leger and fellow freshmen Makenzy Pierre-Webster and Chinyere Okoro and senior Meleni Rodney teamed up for the women’s 4x400m relay, and took second place with a time of 3:40.11. The men’s team, Ismail Tuner, Chase Wells, Riley Kelly, and Cameron Reynolds took fourth place with a time of 3:14.10.

#4 Women’s Tennis

The UCLA women’s tennis team took part in the ITA Kickoff Weekend and started off the tournament with a shut out Minnesota 4-0. Sophomore Taylor Johnson was able to sweep her opponent while freshmen Abbey Forbes and Annette Goulak won their matches without losing more than two games in any of the sets they each played. In doubles competition, Forbes and Goulak defeated Cammy Frei and Tina Kreinis 6-22 while Abi Altick and Johnson defeated Ekin Ercetin and Dalila Said 6-13.

Following these victories, UCLA drubbed Loyola Marymount University 4-0 as well, earning their place in next month’s ITA National Team Indoor Championships in Chicago. Forbes got her second win of the weekend and freshman Sasha Vagramov notched her first singles and doubles wins of her dual-match career. Sophomore Elysia Bolton was able to get her third singles win.

#8 Men’s Volleyball

The UCLA men’s volleyball team was in University Park, PA taking part in the Pac-12/Big Ten Challenge, and split the tournament, falling 0-3 to #10 Penn State, but rallying to beat Ohio State 3-1 and handing the Buckeyes their first loss of the season.

Against Penn State, UCLA was unable to come from behind in set one as the NIttany Lions jumped out to an early 7-3 lead. The Bruins were able to tie things up at 13 all, but Penn State ultimately took the set, 25-22. In set two, UCLA actually gained the lead 4-1 off a pair of aces from server Kyed Jensen and it was a back and forth shootout until the end when Penn State was able to pass the Bruins on their 23rd point. The final set score was 29-27. In set three, it was back to the Nittany Lions for the early lead and UCLA was not able to tie the set up until 19-19 and it was tied all the way through the 24th point. Penn State was able to hit two in a row and ultimately took the set, 26-24, and the match.

UCLA came back with a win against Ohio State in a four-set match where the Bruins and the Buckeyes traded blows. UCLA decidedly took set one, 25-16. Ohio State was barely able to notch the win in set two, 26-24, but UCLA came back in set three for another 25-16 win. In set four, UCLA won again 25-17, hitting .489 for the match to the Buckeyes’ .271.

#5 Women’s Water Polo

The UCLA women’s water polo team was in Michigan over the weekend participating in the Michigan Invitational and swept their competition with four wins total, all over Top 25 teams.

UCLA started the tournament with a 14-7 win over #11 Pacific, led by a hat trick from freshman Abbi Hill and keeping a perfect 25-0 all-time record against Pacific. Against #7 Michigan, the Bruins topped the Wolverines, 12-4, with Hill scoring yet another hat trick while redshirt freshman goalie Georgia Phillips tallied a season-high-tying nine saves while giving up four goals.

In game three against #24 Marist, UCLA prevailed, 14-4, only allowing Marist to score in the first and third quarters. UCLA’s first four goals were on power plays and put the Bruins out in front 5-2 going into the second. UCLA added three goals in the second quarter and held Marist at two, and added six more in the second half to secure the win.

UCLA’s final win of the weekend came against #21 Wager, 16-6. The teams were tied at 3 all after the first quarter, but UCLA came back strong and added four goals in the second to Wagner’s one. In the second half, the Bruins totalled nine goals while Wagner was only able to add two. Hill finished the contest with a season-high seven goals.

#10 Men’s Tennis

The UCLA men’s tennis team also participated in the ITA Kickoff Weekend, beating San Diego State 4-1 and University of Central Florida 4-3.

Against SDSU, Junior Keegan Smith notched the win against Fabian Roensdorf, while sophomore Govind Nanda and junior Connor Hance also posted singles wins. Nanda and Smith teamed for the doubles point, defeating Ignacio Martinez and Aaro Pollanen.

In the final against UCF, it came down to senior Ben Goldberg beating No. 108 Bogdan Pavel and clinching a team spot in next month’s ITA National Team Indoor Championships in Madison, Wisconsin. Nanda and Patrick Zahraj also took singles wins, while Bryce Pereira and Zahraj defeated JanMagnus Johnson and Alan Rubio in a final showdown for the victory.

#20 Women’s Golf

At the Tri-Match in the Desert on Sunday, UCLA was bested by #2 Arizona State by one stroke, 287-288, and tied University Of Denver. UCLA’s Claire Legaspi tied for second at two under par while Emma Spitz came in fourth at one stroke under.


Go Bruins!